Kiawah River Creates Community Focused on Responsible Living
Nestled on 2,000 acres of picturesque land with a rich farming history, Kiawah River is committed to carrying on the agricultural legacy of Johns Island for generations to come. A modern-day agrihood, Kiawah River features a family owned 100-acre working farm, actively maintained beehives and is home to a local pasture-raised cattle company, all of which help to create a self-sustaining community that prioritizes residents’ wellness and a strong connection to nature.
Run by the Freeman family’s fourth generation of farmers, the working farm at Kiawah River produces an array of crops, including melons, squashes, butter beans, tomatoes and bell peppers. Access to these farm-to-table ingredients allows customers of the farm to support the local economy and embrace a healthy lifestyle. This is just one aspect of Kiawah River’s commitment to sustainability, which emphasizes adding value back to the sea islands ecosystem and society through a community centered on responsible living.
Produce grown and sold locally can ripen longer than fruits and vegetables that travel hundreds of miles from the farm to a grocery store. This results in higher nutrients, richer taste and a lower impact on the environment. To further minimize the community’s environmental impact, Kiawah River’s six beehives are maintained by resident beekeeper Chuck Hudspeth, who facilitates the bees pollenating the community’s natural vegetation while also providing seasonal harvests of local honey.
In addition to the working farm, Kiawah River pastures are grazed by Belted Galloway cattle from Three Gates Cattle Company, a locally owned breeder. The organic beef cattle are grass-fed on 18 acres of shaded, creek-side pasture. Two full-time onsite employees provide the highest-possible standard of care according to the Global Animal Partnership’s 5-Step Animal Welfare Rating.
The cattle raised at Kiawah River will remain on the pasture throughout their life cycle, resulting in healthier, leaner beef without any added hormones. In general, beef from local cattle is more nutritious and flavorful, as transporting cattle can lead to increased stress, which negatively affects quality and nutritional value.
Supporting a farm-to-table lifestyle while stimulating the local economy fosters a genuine sense of community and partnership at Kiawah River. Farmers create better relationships with their customers and customers get peace of mind as they feed their families with the highest-quality local foods.